Friday, November 3, 2017

Rock wall, catio and other news.....

Thought it was time for an update on our yard progress and our rock wall! Here it is November already and I can't seem to keep up with Father Time.. he gets way ahead of me and I can't keep up. I just realized why...... as we get older, we can't run as fast!  Oh boy........

I'm trying not to overload this post with photos, but I've taken so many and just like to share them, so I guess I WILL overload it with photos! 


Our front yard rock wall is almost completely done! I'm so happy! Thought I'd show you pictures now as I was so excited to take them on the day they finished up. All that's left is to put some different kind of sealer in some of the cracks left in the wall, and especially the big crack where the wall was almost falling down. It was pretty neat to watch them back a big truck into the wall and push it back towards the house about a foot!

They dug out behind, cut off some of the "dead men" to allow for pushing the wall back, and put LOTS of rebar in to hold it to the dead men... plus put rebar in to attach the front wall to the side wall that was falling down.

Look at all that dirt piled up on my pretty green lawn! eeeeekkkkk... but it went right back in the trench  fairly soon so didn't ruin the lawn.

Bolts in the front go way through to attach to the dead men.
Here is the wall right after they pushed it up.. had to brace it until they got the rebar and bolts in:

Wow.. it's standing straight and tall again!

Front view.............(hubby always seems to be in the picture - his legs anyway)
Wall to side of house (below).... pretty much repaired and straight.. still looks "rustic" but we wanted to keep that look. I think the two holes in the front got patched and painter guy is going to use some special sealer to make it look like rock.

He re-cemented the top of the side wall, and along the front too. Looks really nice.

Our catio is totally done now! It's attached to the garage so it won't blow away..... we raised it up on blocks and put a floor on the bottom. Carpet is in and snuggly blankets in the upstairs area. Ready for the kitties when (and if) we got on a little trip (which may be happening on Thanksgiving!).

Kitty door to the garage is by the little red bench. They like to come out and sit on the bench.

The whole purpose of the "catio" is to keep our cats locked in the garage if/when we go somewhere for more than a day.... and they can have their food and water in there and be safe from the neighborhood strays.... but they can also come outside for some fresh air. Boy what we don't do for our cats!! 


We managed to find time to take a little drive east of us, about 60 miles into the Ochoco Mountains. It was really pretty... a gorgeous Fall day (end of September) but I didn't take pictures! Bad me. There was a little bit of Fall foliage to see.. and of course stopped on the way back for some ice cream!

Just last week, I FINALLY got to drive west of us towards the Cascade Mountains. I've been wanting to do this since we moved here two years ago! I was craving big trees and water.. so off we went. I have been curious as to how far we would have to drive before we would some some actual "forests".

About 40 miles (and an hour and a half later), here is what we saw:

Can't tell you how thrilled I was! But..... the down side is.... the road to get there was horrible! Very washboardy and bumpy and not good at all. Poor hubby was sure our truck would fall apart. But it was worth it to see BIG trees, big Pines, huge Douglas Firs,  Hemlock and Cedar. We were also surprised to see the Tamarack changing colors to gold........ what a wonderful sight to behold!

The washboard road had some gorgeous views of Mt. Jefferson, but I didn't take pictures of that because a big forest fire had been through that area, and it was not a pretty sight. Very disappointing to see that area scarred like that.

My main objective for this drive, was to see some water! Here is "The river we didn't get to see, The Metolius":

Photo compliments of a website I found. Not mine.
And........... I thought we would see a river, so I held off taking pictures until we got to the river......... but...........darn it......... we took a wrong turn (due to the negligence of the navigator-me) and ended up not crossing the ridge we were supposed to cross to get to the river. I got totally turned around, so we ended up driving on THIS side of the ridge, rather on THAT side, so never did see the river. 

And it's a big beautiful river too.. the Metolius, which runs north of Sisters, Oregon up to the headwaters. There are campgrounds and beautiful spots to sit by the river, and cabins and well... just gorgeous. I was there many years ago. But we didn't get to see it.

We ended up in Sisters, which is a quaint, touristy, western town. I planned to end up there anyway, but would have been via the Metolius River. As it was, we had lunch there, and found a pretty little sitting area to take some "golden" pictures.

What a pretty day and the leaves were really putting on a show for us! I did mange to find a creek outside of Sisters with a little exploring. I knew it was there "somewhere". So I got to see some water, plus a peek of Mt. Jefferson through the trees.

So my soul is refreshed for awhile longer now.


I'm very excited to say that I've re-opened my Esty shop! I pondered on it all summer after I closed it. I went through "Etsy withdrawals" for awhile too. I just didn't have the time to manage the shop over the summer. But..................... I've been on a crafting tizzy again, so figured I'd better have somewhere to share my projects. There's a widget link to my shop on the top right side bar. It should take you to all of my goodies there! 

I've added some new items. Here are a few:

Photo booklet.

Photo "flip flap" folio album with tags.

Smallish photo booklet.

Christmas photo booklet.

Digital "instant download" poem The Woodshed, that my husband wrote several years ago. I made the design with photos from his friend's woodshed and the snow backdrop is from our property in Washougal, WA.
I have alot of digital downloads in my shop. I just love making them and love adding quotes to my photography. I have so many that I haven't even added to my shop yet! All in good time I guess..........  Here's a link to my shop: My Pink Paper Cottage.


Well... not a whole lot as been done ON the camper, but we've bought a few things and had the tie downs put onto the truck so we can actually carry it! Hubby just got the botton plywood box (that slides into the truck) painted.

He has taken the two old leaking top vents out and the holes are ready for new ones to be installed. We're having that done next week. Hubby decided he really didn't want to attempt it, as he wants to be sure they are sealed really well. To go have the vents put in, we have to get the camper ONTO the truck! Keep your fingers crossed as we've never done it before.

He HAS been working inside, tearing out most of the water damaged paneling.... we've had about two garbage cans full of yucky pieces of paneling and 2x2's. I'm amazed though, that more areas are fine and not damaged by water. We mostly have to replace the paneling on the bed part that goes over the truck roof. That will come with time (and money).


I'm on a crafting roll lately as I said. I've made several photo books and albums that are different than the little pocket albums I usually make. They are now in my Etsy shop, and I have about 3 more almost done. It's so fun and addictive. 

I'm also loving purchasing little downloadable vintage tags from online places, like Etsy and I found a darling vintage luminary made from paper, that you fold up and glue and it's a cute tall birdhouse that stands up, and you put the little electric tealight inside. I love it!

Isn't it the cutest thing? The lady has it in different colors and themes. This is pink with a bird, and she has a similar one in blue, plus many for Christmas, Fall, birthdays, etc. The shop is Seneca Pond Crafts on It costs $2.50 to download this printable and the blue one. What a deal and so fun.

Although I decided not to make too many Christmas gifts this year, I did want to make a little tag album for one of my family members, so came up with this one and it was so fun to make. I used some cute Christmas tags I got from Seneca Pond Crafts. (I'm not being paid to give her a shout-out.... I just LOVE her vintage tags and 3-D paper projects!).

I'm still addicted to making these little tag photo albums. Now that I can download and print hundreds of different tags, I'm even more in love with them! 

I used one of my sweet little paper "rosettes" on the cover. I have a ton of these in my Etsy shop. They are so great to use on packages and gift bags, or even cards. 

Well... I guess that's enough photos and news for now. 

Have a good weekend everyone!



  1. So much pretty and fun in this post Marilyn. Love that pic of the two of you. So sweet and what a great background for your sweet picture. Happy Weekend.

    1. Thank you Kris! I loved that picture of us and the setting too. We sat in that very spot 15 years ago as of Nov. 2nd when we were celebrating our engagement! Marilyn

  2. My goodness, Marilyn, what a post! I enjoyed every word you shared! I was SO excited that you and your husband got to take a road trip out west into the mountains! It is so wonderful and refreshing, although I am WELL familiar with buckboard kind of roads, these are the kind of roads that inevitably lead to the most promising little spots to visit, although I'm so sorry that you didn't get to see the river! It is a beautiful river though! It would be very disappointing to not get to see it, but it looks like you had so much fun in Sisters, Oregon. Great picture of Mount Jefferson! I loved seeing the changing colors of the tamaracks, it looks so much like our forests here! Amazingly now, our tamaracks still have their color, but with snow on them. I haven't seen that before. Usually we don't get snow that sticks until after the tams drop their leaves.

    I enjoyed seeing all the beautiful things you have crafted! You are so talented and make the loveliest things with all your printouts and designs. That little bird luminary is just the cutest thing ever! What a delightful gift for someone! I must go and check that out. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit with you today, and I am so thankful that you and your husband are going to be able to get out and travel a bit too! And also, SO thankful that your rock wall got completed, oh what a blessing that is too, so many good things to read in this post, I'm just so happy for you! Big hugs to you today (we are getting our second snowstorm of the month here, lots of snow on the ground for November!) Have a lovely weekend :)

    1. HI Marilyn... what a wonderful response! I was in HEAVEN seeing the forest and tamaracks and the deep greens, and yellows of the tams. I felt like I WAS in Heaven! When I lived in SW Washington (east of Vancouver, WA), I lived right IN the forest practically, and I took it all for granted. I miss it so much! I could wander gravel roads like you get to do now... and I REALLY do miss it! I bet seeing snow on the yellow tamaracks would be just stunning!

      You should go check out Seneca Pond Crafts. She's on and also I think Etsy. Her printables are just my style and I love them all! Those little luminaries are just darling, and she has some Christmas ones too which I just NEED to get. They are so reasonably priced, so when I need a fix of something new, I can go and download something of hers and be totally happy!

      We haven't gotten any snow yet. I'm so glad. Not ready for it but I know it'll come soon. Have a great week! hugs.. Marilyn

  3. wow sweetie sure looks good.. hubby

  4. Hi Marilyn! Wow, such a great post. Your stone wall looks so good. Lots of work to get it to that point, but so worth it, huh? Of course, I love stone walls of any kind; love the rusticity. The photo of you and your hubby is so sweet. You can just see the love you have for each other. Very nice. You are so talented, my friend. Your photo albums are so pretty. You really have an eye for harmony. The luminary is so cottagey. I went to the website and pinned it. I see you enhanced yours with pearls and crocheted lace. That really makes it special! Thanks for stopping by and leaving the nice comment last week. I appreciate that. I'll be posting again soon. Have a lovely Sunday. Hugs.

    1. Nancy... yes I too love those rustic rock walls and was glad we got to keep ours. My husband was set on having a railroad tie wall! Oh no I said! Really? Not my fave for my little "cottage". And yes, these luminaries are so so cute.. I plan to print out some Christmas ones. It's fun to embellish them too. I'm hooked on printables from online, as can make so many fun things out of them at a very low cost. A fun way to get my "fix" for wanting to buy some little thing! Take care.. have a good week! Marilyn

  5. Hi Marilyn: That rock wall is a beauty but what an undertaking. It really looks great and sturdy too. Your kitties must be in heaven, to be able to get out in the fresh air. What a great idea for them. We have always loved Sisters and have spent many a vacation there. A really beautiful place in a bunch of beautiful OR places. Your pics are amazing and that is a pretty cute couple sitting there..Thanks for your kind visit. Happy Thursday..xxoJudy

    1. Thank you Judy. I LOVE Sisters too! I would live there if I could afford it but being the gem that it is, prices for land of housing are sky high! I'll have to be content to visit. That rock wall was here when we moved in, but had a big crack and it was leaning out towards the road. Then when the big tree blew down last April, it made the wall crack even more. I feel good that it is now standing strong and upright again!

    2. Me again, Marilyn: I get those stencils from the Stencilsmith. You can google that name. They have a pretty good selection. I was just having a conversation with my daughter at Thanksgiving. They now have 2 cats and 2 dogs so she said not to expect much decorations from them this year. Thanks again for your lovely visit..xoJudy

  6. Wow!!! No wonder you feel like you're getting old . . . you're doing so much! It wore me out just to read your blog, LOL. Love that photo of you and your hubby.
    Happy Thanksgiving and thanks for enter your name in my Give-A-Way.
    Connie :)

    1. Thank you Connie. You have a nice Thanksgiving too. I've been sick for a week so things kind of came to a standstill.....I guess I needed the rest!

  7. What a great post...You two sure have been doing a lot. I'd feel old doing everything you all have done. I also love the photo of the two of you and its nice to know a picture was taken back when you were engaged. You can mark the hands of time and maybe take more pictures throught the years. P.S. your rock well is looking so good!

    1. Thank you Cathy. Yes I'm happy our wall is straight and tall once again. I really worried about it falling down! And I do plan to use that spot in Sisters, OR for future passage of time photos of hubby and I. I just love that little town and always dreamed of living there, but too spendy for our will be happy to visit now and then. Take care....Marilyn

  8. Thanks for your visit, Marilyn. You are so thoughtful. I am liking the tree better, but am going to try to learn if I can adjust my camera to take a better pic of the lights..Happy Tuesday..Judy

  9. Wow! What stunning photos! Your drive looks like it was an absolute delight :)

    And that rock wall is fabulous! I'm sure it adds a nice touch to your yard.

    As always, your creations bring a smile to my face :) You create such lovely things, my friend.

    Thank you for the sweet visit to my blog and I'm so glad you order arrived. I can't believe it took that long! I am guessing it's because of the Christmas season...the Postal Service seems to slow down a bit during this crazy time :)

    Wishing you a joyous weekend! Hugs!

  10. Beautiful photos of your trip....such amazing scenery! Your makes are have been busy. The house is looking great too. Wishing you a happy countdown to Christmas xox

  11. Thank you again, Marilyn. You are invited to curl up in my guest room anytime..Happy Holidays..xxoJudy

  12. I just wanted to thank you for the lovely comments you left on my yo-yo series :) You are just the sweetest! You mentioned you have an idea for another yo-yo project....I would love to hear what it is {{smiles}}

    Hugs to you!

  13. Thanks, Marilyn. It is a pretty wreath. I feel happy that I have it..Merry Christmas to you and yours..xxoJudy


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